2013 Nominees to the UUPCC Board of Directors & Nominating Committee

Each year at this time, we receive the recommended nominees to the UUPCC Board of Directors. We are pleased to announce the following nominees to the Board of Directors:

For three-year terms until 2016
(Four positions available)

Ann Gary, Upton, MA

Ann Gary has been involved with UUPCC since 2004, initially in a networking role—working to support and strengthen partnerships. Her first interest was in reaching out and getting involved with a faraway place, but Ann was surprised by becoming “spiritually” involved in her partner church relationship with Csekefalva, Transylvania. She hosted her partner minister on her first trip to the U.S. in 2002. Since then, she and her family have visited Transylvania more than six times and again hosted stays in the U.S in 2009 and 2011.

Ann runs the Travel Committee as one of her UUPCC board responsibilities. Ann is a marketing consultant by trade who specializes in evaluating and improving relationships between major advertisers and their advertising agencies. She is a dedicated humanist, and has been a UU for close to 20 years. Ann lives in an old farmhouse in central Massachusetts with her husband, Rev. Tim House (Foxborough Universalist Church), and their son Alex who is about to head off to college. And we mustn’t forget their dog, Baci.

“One of the wonderful things about being involved in UU Partnerships is the different levels of engagement possible: History, politics, language, customs, village life, congregational life, people, our shared religious roots and spiritual connections... and most importantly, shared experiences with individuals that can strengthen and transform each other’s lives.”

Eileen Higgins, New York, NY

Eileen Higgins brings a mix of experience from both the private and public sectors. She has served in leadership roles in the Foreign Service and with the Peace Corps in Latin America; and has marketing, communications, and digital experience working on numerous consumer brands for over twenty years.

Eileen became involved with the UUPCC through a very fortunate encounter with Dr. Richard Ford one Sunday at the post-service coffee hour at All Souls Church in New York City. Intrigued by Dr. Ford’s explanation of his work with Community Capacity Building (CCB), Eileen was driven to action. She has been involved with the UUPCC CCB program ever since.

Eileen believes that CCB enhances partnership by providing a structured method to listen to the needs of overseas partners and begin to understand their lives, communities, and their dreams for a better future, and by encouraging action. Together, partners can build a better future for communities in Africa, the Philippines, Transylvania, India—anywhere UUs are in a position to lead change. “When I drank that cup of coffee more than ten years ago in New York City, I never imagined that I would be friends with UUs across four continents. I would be honored to serve on the board of the UUPCC.”

The Rev. Jennifer Emrich, Yarmouth, ME

The Rev. Jennifer Emrich is minister at the First Universalist Church of Yarmouth in Yarmouth, ME. She was called to First U after serving as an Interim Minister at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Castine during her seminary years in Bangor, ME. Rev. Jennifer and the lay leaders of First U have successfully utilized both the concept of partnership and the practice of their long-standing Partner Church relationship with the Transylvanian Unitarian village of Gyepes as a basis for developing a comprehensive social justice program that reaches all ages and involves all of the small groups, councils and committees of their church, as well as engaging newcomers and enriching Sunday worship. Rev. Jennifer has been involved in the Partner Church relationship for six years, traveling to Romania on multiple occasions, leading youth mission trips, adult pilgrimages, witnessing Community Capacity Development for Gyepes and assisting First U young adults and lay leaders, along with their Transylvanian partners, in running an annual summer camp for children in Gyepes and neighboring villages.

The Rev. Bruce Johnson, Duluth, MN

The Rev. Bruce Johnson has been the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Duluth, Minnesota since August of 2011. He is a native of Northern Minnesota and a graduate of Bowdoin College, in Brunswick, Maine. His M.Div. is from Harvard Divinity School and he has a D.Min. from Meadville Lombard Theological School.

His experience with partnership is primarily in India, where he visited in the fall of 2008. Before coming “home” to Duluth, Bruce served churches in Vermont, Indiana, Michigan and Illinois. He looks forward to serving a second term on the board, and hopes to persuade his congregation to establish a partnership abroad.


2013 Nominee to the UUPCC Nominating Committee

The nominating committee is responsible for submitting names of nominees to the UUPCC Board of Directors and to the Nominating Committee.

For a three year term until 2016
(One position available)

The Rev. Kelly Crocker, Madison, WI

The Rev. Kelly Crocker has been Minister of Religious Education at the First Unitarian Society of Madison, WI since 2001, and has served on the UUPCC Board of Directors since 2009. She has been a passionate supporter of Madison’s partnership with Nagyajta and the Partner Church program ever since traveling to Transylvania in 2005. Kelly is married to her amazing partner/stay-at-home dad, Dan Raysbrook, and they are blessed with two children, Sam and Owen.  ••